Your copier (or multifunctional printer, MFP) is a computer. Many devices, including your mobile phone or smart TV, are now computers even though they once carried a single utility. All the new functionality has brought us value and convenience, but also new challenges. When your copier is a computer, it carries the same security risks that your actual computer does. It's time to start protecting your office copier like you would protect your PC.
Here's how to safeguard your copier from security risks:
Restrict and Monitor Access to Your Copier
Managing access to your copier is one of the most basic ways you can keep it secure. Follow me printing, or release printing as it's also called, is an affordable and effective way to ensure only those who should be printing can use your copier. After a print job is sent over the network to a copier, a user uses a PIN, Active Directory credentials or card authentication to release the job. These security measures can be used for any of the copier's functionality for complete security. Software like Print Audit 6 can provide an audit trail of users, as well as lock out a variety of sources that you might not want a user to print from.
Read More: 6 Handy Features of Print Audit
Securely Integrate Your Copier With Your Network
Your copier is a network endpoint, and should be treated as such. The IT department in your organization should take every precaution to protect your copiers from outside attack as they would for any other computer on the network. Measures such as changing the default network password and always updating to the latest firmware can help keep your copier from being hijacked or used as a platform to attack other parts of your network.
Properly Dispose of Your Copier's Hard Drive
This may surprise some folks, but modern copiers contain hard drives which do store image data. There are methods to routinely mitigate the risk this presents, and it's also best practice to either destroy or wipe the hard drive when your copier lease is up or when you otherwise get rid of the machine. Here at A&A Office Systems, we configure the copiers we sell to regularly overwrite their own data with random characters to make reconstruction nearly impossible, and we also wipe every hard drive that is returned to us.
Copier security is just one of the many aspects of office technology we take seriously here at A&A! If you want to learn more about office technology, download our free eBook!